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Mr. Beaks And Chris Morris Discuss The Brilliant FOUR LIONS!

Opening this Friday in limited release across the U.S. is Chris Morris's FOUR LIONS, a brutally funny caper comedy about a group of London-based Islamists bumbling their way toward martyrdom. Like DUCK SOUP or DR. STRANGELOVE: HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING AND LOVE THE BOMB, Morris's film delights in lampooning the misguided righteousness (and outright stupidity) that often drives humankind to armed conflict; unlike those movies, it unnerves viewers by attempting to empathize with its fools. Had Morris simply gone the smart-but-zany Monty Python route with FOUR LIONS, the film would've probably caused more of a stir than it has. But by choosing to draw his characters as recognizably flawed people instead of punch lines, Morris forces the audience to consider the circumstances that might compel an otherwise rational human being to give up their life - while taking the lives of others - for a religious cause. These guys aren't all brainwashed monsters drooling over their afterlife allotment of seventy-two virgins; some of them are decent family men who've committed to what they believe is a higher - if not the highest - calling. Feel free to refute this as lazy leftist thinking, but, as Morris explains in the below interview, he's done the research; he's sat in on the trials of thwarted jihadis, and read countless books on the subject. These guys are not, by and large, ferociously dedicated ideologues. They're kind of flighty, actually. In the days and months leading up to zero hour, terrorists are just as preoccupied with idle celebrity gossip and marital issues as everyone else (they probably have a favorite Housewife of New Jersey). Most importantly, these guys are far more likely to fail than succeed; in fact, it was the botched assault on the Yemen-stationed USS The Sullivans in 2000 that inspired Morris to begin developing FOUR LIONS. For nearly two decades, Morris has taken dead satirical aim at every taboo known to man; if you're new to his work, a) I envy you, and b) I'd recommend going chronologically from ON THE HOUR to THE DAY TODAY to BRASS EYE - by which point you should be completely hooked (and ready for JAM). But please don't let your lack of familiarity keep you from FOUR LIONS, which opens this Friday, November 5th in limited release (go to Drafthouse Films' website to find out if it's playing near you). Morris's directorial debut is one of the year's best (and funniest!) movies regardless of how well you know his prior endeavors. When one interviews Chris Morris, it is evidently obligatory for the journalist to note that the British humorist is "reclusive", "press shy" and/or "mercurial". So here is my interview with the reclusive, press shy, mercurial, warm and tremendously insightful Chris Morris.



Mr. Beaks: I've been waiting for someone to come at terrorism without complete solemnity. Speaking as an American, it seems verboten to approach this subject with even a dark-comedic sensibility.

Chris Morris: Why should that be? I really don't understand. Particularly since on my tiny sample - i.e. Sundance, South By Southwest and a screening in New York I attended a couple of weeks ago - it's not that people aren't prepared to get it. So why the reticence in coming forward? You'd have thought that having received what one might describe at least as a slap nine years ago that there would be people more than willing to come forward and change the record.

Beaks: I would think so, too. We were willing to do that decades and decades ago when Ernst Lubitsch made TO BE OR NOT TO BE in the midst of World War II. He made a very funny comedy about Nazis - with Jack Benny, of all people. I think Americans had become so complacent before 9/11 that it was a shock to the system when it happened. And now there's a great deal of political correctness about it.

Morris: That's weird, though, isn't it? You could easily understand the right, or at least the center-right, having a position that is sort of irreverent with it. SOUTH PARK is an exception, but they play it in a cartoon vein, so it often gets overlooked. But that kind of thinking... that Mark Twain kind of tradition. (Pause) Glenn Beck! I'd like to see Glenn Beck running around the studio dressed as an airliner!

Beaks: I would like to see that, too. That would be fantastic.

Morris: It's so close! Surely, to see him strapping on some white wings and putting a nose cone on his face and charging around. It's got to be done!

Beaks: Why was this your first feature? What made this the logical first feature project for you?

Morris: I don't tend to think about things that way. People had been saying to me for years, "When are you going to make a film?" I just thought, "Well, when there's a film to be made." Thoughts pop into your head, and they have a rough shape; you know what they are in terms of what they're intended to be. When this came up, it was pretty clear pretty quickly that it at the very least had to be a three-act structure piece. And then it's kind of like, "Well, is that going to be on TV or on film?" That's the only question. You know the length - it's approximately ninety minutes - and you know the rough shape. It just clearly wasn't going to be a sketch, a sitcom, a song or a novella. I think it just had the right shape for a film - whatever shape that is.

Beaks: You've talked about the inspiration being the Yemeni Millennium bombers, and how their boat sinking was a sort of Keystone Kops moment. Once you had that idea, did you then have to think about tone?

Morris: I use that example because that's the first one I specifically remember as announcing the possibility of this project. But it didn't do it completely; it just announced the possibility of it. There had to be a cluster of examples before you got a pattern. By that point, a range of different tones of humor suggested themselves, from a reaction shot in a Keystone Cops film to the basic, nitty gritty of people getting on and not getting on in a tight-knit group - and, I suppose, the kind of humor of undermining the status of previously, immaculately iconic bad guys. Once you have that as a sort of early kind of role, things just start sticking to it. The Keystone Kops thing, for example... I attended a court case that lasted eight months, which was basically seven guys who'd gotten 600 kilos of fertilizer. They'd gone to a training camp to learn how to turn it into a bomb. Then they'd come back, and they'd forgotten how to make it into a bomb. But they still wanted to make it into a bomb, so they started making calls back to Pakistan saying, "Yeah, you told me how to make a bomb, but I've forgotten. Could you remind me?" At which point the people in Pakistan were like, "Are you joking? There's probably only half the world's security services listening to this line!" They'd got themselves a top-notch MI5 surveillance into the bargain. What struck me is that this was referred to in court by the significant posse of policemen who were always there, and the twenty odd journalists who came in every day, [as] "Keystone Kops". They talked about it. They literally said, "This is like Keystone Kops what these guys are up to." And yet when it was reported in the papers, it was back to the serious narrative: these guys were going to bring down ten airliners. I mean, they weren't going to bring down ten airliners. They momentarily had a fantasy that it would be a great thing to do, but there was as much chance of that as them building a moon rocket. So there was a lot of laughter that wasn't getting outside, and that really seemed, in fully three dimensions, to suggest the basis for this film.

Beaks: And that's because, for the newspapers and the networks, fear keeps people reading and watching. If these guys seem kind of innocuous, they'll have a laugh and turn away, I guess, right?

Morris: It is partly that. But once you're reporting for a newspaper, you've got a preset condition. It's actually to do with people not thinking at all; it's just to do with "This is the shape of a modern terrorism story." You instinctively sideline the farce; you sideline the fact that even when these guys bought the fertilizer... the guy who sold the fertilizer to them said, "Right. This is for your allotment, okay? Is your allotment as big as three football pitches? Because that's how much fertilizer you've got there." And the guy buying it said, "Yeah. Yeah, it's about that big." These really stupid conversations that are not there in the newspaper report because 1) it's pushed for space, it's probably going to be 200 - 300 words on the average day of the court roundup, and 2) they're going for the things that fit the narrative anyway. If they mention airliners or blowing up some slags in a nightclub, that's the bit that's going to get in - rather than the bit where the one white guy in the group pretended to be from MI5 in order to persuade the parents of one of the brown guys that they should let him go to Pakistan. Literally. You've got an MI5 recording of this happening in real time audio. They say, "Right. There's my mom's house. You go down the road there, you pretend you're from MI5, and you say it's important to go to Pakistan as a matter of national security. My parents are loyal Brits. They will buy that. They will buy the authority of MI5." Duly, this guy goes and does exactly that, and comes back to the car ten minutes later and goes, "Yes! High five, brother! I've done it! I've fooled your parents! They're going to let you go!" And indeed they do. I'd love to see that report in the papers, but there's not the queue for it at the moment.

Beaks: That's unfortunate.

Morris: But it's getting there, isn't it? It's getting there. Somebody was trying to bring down a plane and set fire to his underpants. He looks pretty damn silly. And there was a guy in Indonesia the other day: he was a suicide bomber on his way to bomb an army compound. He was on his bicycle, swerved to avoid a pothole, hit a lamppost and blew up. I mean, these kinds of incidents are pretty stupid. (Laughs)

Beaks: (Laughing) They are. But when they get reported in the United States, if there were any American citizens that could've been hurt, that fact gets used like a shillelagh to beat over the head of Obama or whomever is believed to have been negligent in allowing this to almost happen.

Morris: They weren't looking. Yes. (Pause) I'm sure you're right in that there's always a political angle on any story, but I do genuinely think that almost anyone in the American political spectrum is capable of going, "Hang on a second. These guys really are ridiculous." I don't think it's without American consciousness to do that. I just suspect that it's what the needs of the day are. The Republicans are on the rise, and the Democrats are going to get a bashing; the referee is going to blow his whistle on Obama's presidency so far. You've got all those presets surrounding any story that comes in today. That will determine how it goes. Similarly, if you're fighting in Iraq... after all, Fox News ran a program called "The Cost of Freedom"; I think they still do. So everything is determined by a preset of policy. But I think, equally, on any day, any one of those pundits or talk show hosts could just suddenly say, "You know what, these people are ridiculous." It wouldn't have to be Howard Stern. It could be Rush Limbaugh. It could be anybody. As I said, it could be Glenn Beck strapping on wings. I don't know, It seems to me it's there, and I don't think anybody could violently disagree with that. Am I wrong?

Beaks: I don't think you're wrong. It's just that someone's got to be the first to do it, and I think that's a frightening place to be. Because if you do it and you draw silence or outrage, then your career is mucked up a bit.

Morris: (Laughs) True. Yeah. Sean Hannity goes full on for the jihadi comedy effect, and tumbleweeds blow across the studio, and his ratings go to zero. I don't think that would happen, but I see what you mean. Breaking ranks. But that's the job for these guys, right? They're all professional rank-breakers! They're all radicals!

Beaks: Did you always plan for your characters to push as far with their plan as they do in the finished film?

Morris: Yeah. I really didn't want to take the very worst examples - guys trying to set fire to their feet or letting off bombs in their underpants - and try and let those speak for everything that is happening. That would be dishonest. Everything in the film is drawn from a real life observation of some kind. We've made everything up, but we've made it up on the basis of what real life had dished up and shown could happen. So I wanted to have a medium-impact event. The guys in the 9/11 attack behaved farcical behavior in their build-up. There's a very good book by Terry McDermott [PERFECT SOLDIERS: THE 9/11 HIJACKERS: WHO THEY WERE, WHY THEY DID IT], which details sort of eyewitness accounts of various people who met the Hamburg cell as they were plotting the 9/11 attacks. And there's another book written by [Yosri Fouda and Nick Fielding] called MASTERMINDS OF TERROR, which talks about the guys who planned the 9/11 attacks. In both cases, you have examples of silly behavior. So it would be wrong to suggest that it's only the rank failures who behave foolishly. It's common. You have examples of klutzy behavior. I wanted to include that, but I didn't want to preclude the fact that they could actually get some of the way to enacting their plan - albeit in a totally compromised way.

Beaks: But also, at the center of this, giving us a character like Omar [played by Riz Ahmed], who's somewhat rational and a good father. My favorite scene in this movie is his use of THE LION KING to explain away his failure. It's also a subtle indoctrination. When you're using a story as powerful as THE LION KING with a child... as Omar's son says, "Simba would never give up!" At that point, he's got him.

Morris: Of course. But I think he's actually talking to himself in that scene. Omar is almost seeking his son's advice for what he should do. He's coming back and saying, "Should I tell everyone and risk causing confusion, or should I keep it a secret and tell them everything is cool?" And his son says, through THE LION KING analogy, "Scar's got to be defeated." And Omar goes, "Great." And off he goes. He's almost seeking the pure advice of his son through that membrane. I don't think his son really understands what's going on, but he knows the narrative of good and evil. I came across guys with radical pasts who love THE LION KING for precisely that: they're caught up in a good-and-evil narrative. It just so happens that they're on the other side of it, and they see the people they're fighting as Scar. It doesn't stop them from being, as you say, a "good dad". I mean, it's the sort of over-repeated cliche that bin Laden is impeccably polite. Now, I would put that as a lower moral rating than being a good dad - albeit, we've just shown [Omar] as a cinematic good dad. I think this is part of what's interesting about what's going on; you might say "frightening", but I think it needs to be dealt with. I think these people can be good dads. It just depends on which side of the fence you are. They're not mean to their own. A soldier who's going out to fight anywhere in the world might have a moment like that with their son. We don't even think about it. When I was a kid growing up, we ran around fighting the Germans, being Spitfires and Hurricanes shooting down Messerschmitts. When we were five, we didn't even think about it. When you're a child, you're caught up in that kind of narrative. I think it's partly natural. The leader of the bombers who attacked London on July 7th five years ago is actually on a video shot by one of his friends with his nine-month-old daughter on his knee saying to her in 2004, when he thinks he's going off to fight in Afghanistan, "You're the best thing in my life. You and your mom have meant more to me than anything else. I'd love to watch you grow up to learn how to speak, but the thing is, I've got to do what I've got to do. I may not see you again. If I don't, I love you more than anything in the world." You're watching this and thinking, "Wow! This is the good-dad speech from a guy who came back and blew up some people in London." That gives you a difficult equation to [work out] in your head.

Beaks: I love the way characters veer effortlessly from English to their natural language when frustrated. It seems like that would be difficult to write.

Morris: I met lots of people when I was doing this, and I noticed, even in the second- or third-generation Pakistani lads I met, was that when they got vexed or excited, they'd slip into what was their most immediate mother tongue - which was either Urdu or Punjabi. The great thing I discovered, particularly in the case of Punjabi... that language is made for swearing; it's an agricultural language which revels in coarseness. I always love playing with language, but I wanted to be restrained in the use of language in order to be accurate, to capture the cadences of the way the people I met spoke. But when you have this rare moment when you go into Punjabi and Urdu, where you can let rip - indeed they did. As soon as I realized that was the case, I just wrote to all the people I'd been meeting, and they all just showered me with the very worst things you can possibly say. That came from pure observation. Even in Arabic, there are basic donkey-and camel-based insults - like the Emir gives them in the training camp. There's a counter-argument that says it's seen as not proper behavior to swear, that a proper Muslim doesn't swear or curse. But while these boys won't curse in front of their parents, they will in front of each other. I can tell you also that Riz, who plays Omar... we'd come up with some extra bits on set. I'd say, "How do you say this?" He speaks Urdu much better than he speaks Punjabi. I didn't realize this would be the case, but when his parents came to see the film... they very much enjoyed it, but their main comment was, "Far too much swearing, Riz. What was all that about?" It's because he was swearing in Urdu, which is seen as a much more decorous language. So if you swear in Urdu, which is possible, it's like you've gone out of your way to swear in the wrong language. Whereas if you swear in Punjabi, it's actually sensible because it's accepted. So that was an extra bit of spice I wasn't expecting.



FOUR LIONS begins its limited roll out this weekend. Again, hit up the Drafthouse Films website for the full release schedule. See this movie! Faithfully submitted, Mr. Beaks

Readers Talkback
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  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:17 p.m. CST

    Sixth!

    by Stallion_Cornell

    Has anyone ever done that?

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:21 p.m. CST

    A superb film.

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    I saw this on its wide UK release months back. <p> <p> I can only guess at the heated debates that'll take place on this talkback. <p> <p> Believe me - this is not a comedy poking fun at the slaughter of innocent people. <p> <p> It's honest, insightful, unsettling, warm, shocking, and hilarious. Those are only several adjectives I could use. <p> <p> I hope no-on here flames this film before seeing it - you'd be doing a disservice to Chris Morris (bona fide genius), the film, and yourselves for not seeing it.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:23 p.m. CST

    Amen, TommyGavinsEgo

    by mrbeaks

    See the movie, <em>then</em> hurl insults.

  • fanatics and be targeted for assassination,after his movie is released? at least the guy has the guts to make this satirical movie.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:35 p.m. CST

    fifth!

    by gabbygall

    do I win a prize?

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:38 p.m. CST

    Chris Morris has balls the size of Saturn...

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    ... and always has. I've wondered what the Stateside reaction this film and the man himself would be from some of the... more vociferous?... minds might be. <p> <p> But this is the man who has been vilified and demonised in some of the more hateful press in his home country (the Daily Fucking Mail - a rag which sails close to inciting racial hatred on a daily basis) for creating some of the most intelligent, challenging and flat-out-fucking hilarious comedy of the last 15 years. <p> <p> A man who has the guts to make a spoof news show surrounding the media hysteria surrounding peadophiles (note I said the media hysteria surrounding it, NOT peadophilia itself) is hardly going to be worried about a few wingnuts taking offence, I would venture.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:38 p.m. CST

    Sorry for the garbled first bit of that post...

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    ... fookin' iPhone.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:40 p.m. CST

    Excellent movie. Morris is a genius

    by scrote

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:42 p.m. CST

    Also very glad Beaks appreciates it.

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    ... it is, after all, a very British, suburban "comedy". I'm sure plenty of the pop-culture references were lost, but hey - we put up with that in every movie and sitcom anyway!

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:44 p.m. CST

    KilliK, it's already been released in the UK

    by KEVIN_COSTNERS_RECYCLED_PISS

    And so far no Islamist fanatics seem to have targeted him. <p> Oh and in regards to Brasseye, here's the funniest part in my opinion: <p> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SRRw1ERj2Gc

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:47 p.m. CST

    He makes some very good points

    by Monkey Butler

    I don't want to come off as sounding relativist, but you hear of groups throughout the West calling for more Christian involvement in parliaments, of eye-for-eye retaliation against everything from rapists to illegal immigrants and of pre-emptively attacking our 'enemies'. Sure it's a different context, but people holding those beliefs in Western countries would still, I'm sure, consider themselves 'good people' or 'good parents'. There's no reason why people who wind up blowing up tube stations or night clubs or office buildings can't think the same thing. <p> The common factor is always stupidity. Stupidity means undervaluing human life and being easily swept up in some historical and cultural tide that can't even be seen, much less understood by the stupid person. Stupidity means being totally deaf to the broader consequences of our actions, whether it be burning religious texts or flags, building cultural centres or settlements in occupied territories.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:49 p.m. CST

    Gervais is a whore.

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    A funny whore. But one who peaked with The Office.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:51 p.m. CST

    .... and Gervais also ...

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    ... thieved pretty much his entire schtick from Larry David and Garry Shandling... Doesn't make him less funny, but it's true.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:52 p.m. CST

    "FUCK MINI BABYBELLS"

    by UGG

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:53 p.m. CST

    Bang on, Monkey Butler.

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    And SPF - please change your name. I've finally seen the flick after your incessant whoring of it made me avoid it like the plague. <p> <p> It's, y'know, okay. Seen better. It's done. Get over it.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:54 p.m. CST

    RUBBER-DINGHY RAPIDS!!!

    by TommyGavinsEgo

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:59 p.m. CST

    Really good interview

    by CHRISTIAN_BALE_TRASHED_MY_LIGHTS

    Well done Beaks.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 6:59 p.m. CST

    Believe it or not...

    by Sithtastic

    even as the nasty buluga caviar swilling, martini guzzling conservative, there's something endlessly funny about watching bad guys be bad at their entire mission in life. I realize Mr.Morris comes from a UK perspective and most likely has radicals in his backyard (anyone want to truck up to Brimingham?), so I sincerely commend his courage for making ANY film that puts would-be-jihadis in a humorous light. Respect. But do not be surprised if--like Salman Rushdie before him--this guy has to go into hiding or has death threats against him. It won't be the first time a well meaning left-of-center artist has had to run for his life from the very intollerant people he sought to "humanize" and that's a true tragedy. I know I don't agree with all of Mr.Morris's worldview at all, but I hope even the passing observer knows the takfirist ideal to which some disaffected, displaced 2nd and 3rd gen immigrants subrscribe doesn't allow for this comedy.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:06 p.m. CST

    Four Lions is really good

    by Lloytron

    Nothing else more needs to be said. Except that Scottpilgrimfan needs another outlet.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:08 p.m. CST

    The lads who bombed London on 7/7...

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    ... were arrested, literally, on the next street to my workplace. Just around the corner. I'd probably walked past them in the corner shop when I'd wandered in for cigarettes on many a lunch break. <p> <p> And if anyone out there thinks Four Lions is removed from reality - go to Google. Chris Morris was as prescient with this as he was brilliant. <p> <p> Google "July 7 Inquests A-Team" from a week or two ago. <p> <p> The Jihadist idiots, mostly British born and bred, spent most of their time in the days before carrying out their plan and murdering people, arguing over text-message over who was going to be "Faceman" and who was going to be "B.A. Baracus" when they went on their "Mission".

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:10 p.m. CST

    Never mind, I saved you the bother.

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    http://tinyurl.com/2vyacp4

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:10 p.m. CST

    Morris

    by scrote

    should have made a movie about 'Cake'. That was fucking hilarious stuff. You can check it out on You Tube

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:11 p.m. CST

    i know at least some Muslims love this film

    by Sigourneys_Beaver

    A few at my workplace were discussing it with great affection. This film is liked a great deal by some in that community. At the end of the day they there are some tit-ends that follow Islam, just like any other religion out there getting twisted.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:13 p.m. CST

    Back to Gervais for a sec...

    by TommyGavinsEgo

    ... the reason Morris hasn't been invited to present any awards, or would even accept the invitation, is that he lets his work speak for itself. He's not a fame-hungry little puppet doing what his agents tell him to do to keep him in the public eye and return favours. Unlike Mr G.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:15 p.m. CST

    Chris Morris gave me the 'bad' AIDS

    by Kizeesh

    So I gave it to my girlfriend.<p> True story that....

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:16 p.m. CST

    That was great, cheers Beaks...

    by CigaretteFairy

    ...any chance you could post the audio? It's so rare to hear him talking seriously, and I'd love to hear him chatting and laughing about the Lion King. Also, did you see his other show 'Nathan Barley'?

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:21 p.m. CST

    Anyone remember Monkey Dust?

    by Robber_Button

    One of its sketches had a similar theme. Although it's protagonists were reluctant Jihadists. Four Lions takes it to it's natural conclusion. <br></br> <br></br>

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:37 p.m. CST

    Profiling

    by MegaBeth

    So everyone agrees profiling is wrong right? Well I don't but probably most of the libs on here are against it. So I look at Morris' photo and the first thing that comes to mind is "Homo". So is he gay? Or am I not profiling him correctly?

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:42 p.m. CST

    The terrorists aren't London based

    by Terence James

    They're in Sheffield. Fucking Americans.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:44 p.m. CST

    Er, no, Chris Morris isn't gay.

    by TommyGavinsEgo

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 7:47 p.m. CST

    Loved "Brass Eye."

    by HorrorFan81

    Can't wait to see this flick. Morris is a very brave man.

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 8:41 p.m. CST

    forgot how to make a bomb

    by IWasInJuniorHighDickhead

    epic

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 8:47 p.m. CST

    Yes, thanks Terence James

    by J.B.M.A.

    I was about to point out this quite cretinous error. Bit like saying they were New Yorkers when they are clearly Texans.<pIt's a great little film anyway, though not as funny as Morris flat out dark - BrassEye remains the standard. ComedyRobber_Button is also right that the rubbish terrorists on MonkeyDust got their first and are equally as funny (bring that show back! It was amazing!)

  • Nov. 4, 2010, 9:55 p.m. CST

    it's pretty simple

    by frank cotton

    IF you are killing, maiming, or attempting to kill or maim, 'infidels', or seriously considering doing same, for your religion, then either you, or your religion (or both), is/are fucked up

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 12:03 a.m. CST

    You're quite welcome J.B.M.A

    by Terence James

    I wouldn't have thought this film would play well in America though. Hope it does, deserves to do well.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 12:22 a.m. CST

    Unlike any other film this year...

    by Boxcutter

    ...or last, or next. Sad, shocking and fucking funny. He's one of a kind, Mr. Morris: only does what he really wants to do, so the resume isn't that long, but everything on it has been planned, written and executed superbly. And now the bugger has made a movie well up to his own standards. True satirists are a treasure; this fella could be our generation's Swift - he's that good. Please see the film.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 2:49 a.m. CST

    jaaaaaaaaammmm is amazing

    by therootstheroots

    it really is.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 3:15 a.m. CST

    Monkey Dust

    by Captain_Ridley

    was fucking amazing. I'd never seen it until earlier this year, been turned off by the crap BBC trailers, but a friend convinced me that I'd appreciate it. Wow. The darkest comedy I've ever seen, anywhere ever. I love Ivan Dobsky, the poor lamb. "Hello, I'm Ivan Dobsky, the meat safe murderer, only I never done it. I only said I'd done it so they'd take my willy out of the light socket."

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 4:18 a.m. CST

    Four Lions

    by Walter_Burns

    It is a very funny film - well worth seeking out. There was suprisingl;y little flack when it was released here in the UK

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 5:30 a.m. CST

    Yeah there was hardly any outrage

    by PaulSC

    There was far more talk about how potentially controversial it is than there was actual controversy. But it's a good movie and was quite successful, which is nice. Can we drop this thing about how Chris Morris is a recluse that never does interviews? He's done like a million interviews for this movie and comes across as chatty and open as anything.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 6:50 a.m. CST

    Love for Monkey Dust!

    by Shpadoinkle

    This is why I love AICN. Shame series' 2 and 3 can't be got on DVD yet though, been dying to see the Paedofinder General skits and seeing them on youtube tends to annoy me when it's not a perfectly placed sketch. I've watched Four Lions a few times now and it's nothing short of a classic for the ages. Been following Morris' career the whole way and he's one of those rare cases where the term genius is entirely justified. The best comedy writer the UK has ever seen. Actually it was fantastic to see him team up with their other top writer/critic Charlie Brooker for Nathan Barley...a show that defies description. Nothing beats Brass Eye for me though! If you don't agree you're wrong and you're a grotesquely ugly freak. Love from the Bog Brained Murphy

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 7:06 a.m. CST

    I want some "cake"

    by masteryoda007

    That drug is insanely good!

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 7:53 a.m. CST

    SHATNER'S BASSOON

    by JIMBOCOP

    Great, GREAT movie. What CM/Beaks don't touch on is that the ineptitude of MI5/Met Police is lampooned just as effectively as the Jihadists. I don't know how much of the farcical murder of Jean Charles de Menezes (A Brazilian shot for looking 'asian' by Met Officers on July 22 2005) got Stateside, but his ghost would surely be nodding with grim satisfaction throughout FOUR LIONS' last act.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 7:56 a.m. CST

    Chris Morris for Deadpool!

    by Smack_Teddy

    Just Kidding. The Monty Python compare/contrast is very apt : Morris & Iannucci for me are the spriritual successors to the Pytrhons (Coogan etc. completeing the rest of the crew respectively), without meaning to put them in a box or anything, what they do in their own right stands apart etc.<p> Its great to see the love/interest pour out again since 'In The Loop' last time i guess, but don't forget 'My Wrongs #...'! Thats a great little short film too!<p> On the subject of British comedy everyone should also check out the Pychoville Halloween special...infact that along with 'The League of Gentlemen' Xmas Special (will always be the movie as far as i'm concerned) & 'A History of Horror with Mark Gatiss' would make for a great triple bill. And Michael Winterbottom's upcoming series with Coogan and Brydon should be well worth catching too, Coogans 'love' letter/ode to the North apparantly, amongst other things .<p>Paul Ross has nothing on me.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 8:09 a.m. CST

    great interview

    by mynamesdan

    great film

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 8:22 a.m. CST

    Erm - TommyGavinsEgo ???

    by dude_gimme_tabs

    The guys who carried out the 7/7 bombings weren't arrested anywhere. They were suicide bombers and as such they were in tiny little pieces and big smears around the inside of an Underground train before the police even knew what was happening.<p> Unless you meant they were scooped into a bucket by a police forensics team close to your office???

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 8:24 a.m. CST

    Monkey Dust

    by dude_gimme_tabs

    Fuck me! I thought I was the only person in the universe who freakin' loved that show!!!<p> A particular favourite of mine was the hideous middle class family naming their baby, and you got to hear the baby's thoughts.<p> "Oh, he looks like a Hercules, shall we call him Hercules?"<p> "You cunts, you absolute cunts, Hercules? What the fuck is wrong with you. Why not Dave, or Steve? Fucking Hercules!!"

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 8:51 a.m. CST

    Brass Eye Buzz Aldran rapist sketch is funny shit!

    by TheManWhoCan

    "Alabaster Codify with the new buzz about Buzz, the bum buzzard. Did he fly in a rocket, or fly up a socket?"

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 8:58 a.m. CST

    Pytrhons

    by Smack_Teddy

    A new word<p> Another great little thing about this film: The way Barry apes or channels Ray Winstone in Heist Movie/Cockney-crime-caper fashion.<p> Oh, and taking the mickey for liking Maroon 5 in retaliation at the very end: I did this to a mate or compared Steely Dan to them for comparing me & my mates to Trashbat. He was not happy. The "There's shades of grey too you know!" "Yeah I know, i'm looking at fifteen of them right now!" sentiment did not amuse him back.<p> Stupid people also thought our east london 'group' might have extremist views or intentions too, because my friend was fond of growing a beard through the London bombings, putting Morris's edited Bush speech on Uni commissioned free music Cd's ("I recently received a touching from my Daddy in the Whitehouse. As much as I don't want my Daddy to fuck me; i'm willing to take it from him, Aggresively, in the face...this is a prescious gift /NEXT LINE REMOVED FOR FEAR OF HUGE BACKLASH...and to all the women and children of Iraq: Go home and die") editing for Muslim news/culture programmes eventually etc, as just one example. The stupidity of how naive or ignorant you can be to how other people view and perceive you based on your actions & words (seperate from the stupididty of just you in yourself and others in general) and the way THEY view or miscontrue you, set alongside the absurdity of the appearance of things such as these groups and an invidividuals pychology/motivation, against the actual reality, is what on a very human level Morris nailed and i love.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 9:04 a.m. CST

    "Where have you really been Clive!?"

    by Smack_Teddy

    http://tinyurl.com/5t6gbn <p>Monkey Dust's finest, along with Ivan & Mr Hoppy!

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 9:09 a.m. CST

    All together!:

    by Smack_Teddy

    http://tinyurl.com/6erz6j <p>Thats the Britain I know.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 10 a.m. CST

    TheManWhoCan

    by Kaitain

    Agree that "the ass in NASA" is one of Brass Eye's great moments. <p> This is also ace: <p> http://tinyurl.com/2e4oc6n

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 10:03 a.m. CST

    We shall name him...Othello

    by Shpadoinkle

    Right, ah'll fuckin' have you pal. See you? Yar fuckin' deed!

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 11:27 a.m. CST

    Roboplegic wrongcock

    by bravogolfhotel

    Very excited for this film. Terrific interview, Beaks.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 12:25 p.m. CST

    btw

    by Kaitain

    Good interview, Beaks.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 2:16 p.m. CST

    The trailers don't look funny

    by estacado1

    Is it really that funny? I don't wanna waste my time with some unfunny shit.

  • Nov. 5, 2010, 4:39 p.m. CST

    BALTIMORA

    by Axl Z

    Went to see this early this year when it came out over here (Feb?) Found it really good, Morris has a slow build up in his films of comedy with everything becoming unsure of what it is thus humour. Great film, bring back The Day Today and British comedy will be saved!

  • Nov. 6, 2010, 4:35 a.m. CST

    Dude_gimme_tabs

    by Walter_Burns

    Hi Dude_gimme_tabs. I think the arrests that TommyGavinsEgo mentions are the ones that relate to the 21/7 attempted bomb plot where they were all arrested. They were seen as very much copycats of 7/7.

  • Nov. 6, 2010, 8:35 a.m. CST

    Brasseye memories.

    by Fixthe Fernback

    Morris trying to sell fantasy drugs to dealers on London's streets wearing a nappy, a bomber jacket and a Balloon shaped hat. Genius indeed.

  • Nov. 6, 2010, 11:27 a.m. CST

    Big-Faced Boy as Satellite Dish...

    by LordPorkington

    Morris is one of my comedy heroes and has been since the original airings of 'On The Hour'. So weird seeing him on 'The IT Crowd' though. He seemed out of place on that show, but I still love the guy for all the major, major laughs he's given me over the past 20 years.

  • Nov. 7, 2010, 4:06 a.m. CST

    One of the biggest misconceptions

    by papabendi

    about Morris's 'Peadogedon' Brasseye episode is that is a comment on the media's hysteria regarding paedophilia. It isn't. Morris himself has said that he did the show because he thought it was funny. He climed that before he had children friends with kids always harped on about what a blessing it was to be a parent, and how great their kids were. Then when he became a parent he found that it was all nonsense. The comedy is more aimed at unsettling that sort of cosy idea of parenthood rather a comment on the media.

  • Nov. 7, 2010, 8:53 a.m. CST

    Ace of Wands

    by papabendi

    There's a good interview with Morris from 2001. he explains that although the intention of Brasseye itself was to lampoon the media in every episode, the points he was raising with the Peadphile episode were nothing to do with that. http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2001/aug/05/news.film

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